Pears on Arches Watercolor Board Demo

by Articles on Art, Demo, Watercolor Demo13 comments

Pears on Arches Watercolor Board

Demo by Krista Hasson

I did this watercolor pears demo using Arches watercolor Board and professional grade watercolors by M. Graham, Davinci, and Winsor & Newton. For this demo, I used the following colors:

Perylene Maroon
Cobalt Blue
Hansa Yellow
New Gamboge
Burnt Sienna
Sap Green


I used a 2b pencil to draw out my picture. Make sure you draw lightly.

I wet my background and foreground being careful not to get the pears wet. I then loosely dropped in some Perylene Maroon adding more where it will be darkest and less where it will be lighter, this is called working wet in wet. Then I let this layer dry completely.

Watercolor tip:

If you touch the paper or board with the back of your hand and it feels cool it is not completely dry, wait until it is no longer cool to the touch.

After it was completely dry, I added a layer of Cobalt blue to the background and the shadow. With layering, I do not pre-wet the paper or board again I put it directly on the dry surface; we call this working wet in dry. I let this layer dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Watercolor tip:

Keep your paint thin for layering and let some underneath colors show through, your color will build up and have nice depth as you add thin layers of color.

I glazed another layer of P. Maroon over the Cobalt Blue and the table. I Let this dry completely. I then started working on the pears by adding hansa yellow, avoiding the highlight areas; while it was still wet, I added small touches of sap green and maroon to start to define the form. I used burnt sienna and a little maroon on the stems. I let it dry completely.

Watercolor tip:

If your paper is still shiny, you can add more pigment. Once the shine goes off the paper do not add more paint. You will get blossoms.

The background has another layer of cobalt and then Maroon, letting the layers dry in between. I stopped once I achieved the darkness I wanted. I worked on the form and shadows of the pears by adding cobalt to the shadow sides and some more Maroon; I warmed up the light side with new gamboge, still avoiding the highlights. Work quickly so you are not working into an area that is drying. Let your painting dry completely. I darkened the stems with a little cobalt and Burnt Sienna and let it dry.

To achieve the depth on the pears, I glazed 2 more layers of blue, maroon, and yellow, always allowing my painting to dry between layers. Remember to stay away from your highlight areas keeping your whites.

Watercolor tip:

If you lose your highlights, you can gently lift a little paint with a soft brush – synthetics work well for lifting.

I hope you have enjoyed this demo.


Cheers, Krista

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Hey there! I'm Krista,
an artist, educator, solopreneur, wife, mother and animal lover. Most of all I am passionate about helping others enrich their lives with art.